I have no doubt that many readers will find a million ways our meeting with AJ Barrera was a complete farce. We are after all grieving parents eager for evidence that our son is not really lost to us. Even I can point to the many times we offered up unsolicited information. However, there is no way AJ could have known about the collie, the location of Gus’ memorial shelves in our house, the memorial plaque at his school (see below), that Gus would poke fun at his relationship with his oldest brother (see below) or that he would take credit for the music that fills his other brother’s life now (see below), not to mention accurately describing the personalities of all the other relatives that made an “appearance”. But the reading was even more than that, hitting nearly every aspect of the difficulties and questions we had not even had the heart to talk to each other about. For example, until the reading, my husband had been incapable of venturing into the backyard, especially where the wagon was hiding directly across from the swing set. It was there, at the bottom of the slide, that he and Gus had last spoken, having a heart to heart about life as Gus enjoyed the sun warming his bald head. For my part, I was wondering if he’d woken up on the other side disappointed that he was no longer with us. I could almost hear him say, “Aw Man, I’m dead…”. I worried that it was my fault for not giving him the stem cells sooner, that I had missed something that would have kept him alive. It gave me great peace to know there was nothing I could do to prevent it and that he had been in control of his leaving and was ready for his transition. We left the reading with the knowledge that Gus is not just in our hearts and memories but that his spirit is actually still with us – we only have to be open to the signs. Like our walk in Spain, our reading with AJ was trans-formative. Since then, Gus is as present in our lives as ever and we are practicing living each moment with more presence and openness. Life can be truly magic.
Final reading segment:
AJ: I might misinterpret this….is there….I actually want to drop it down younger. So I want to drop it down to your younger energy and I rather be wrong on it, but is there actually like a mural or either some sort of engraving or some sort of writing that you had done in honor of your son that I have to bring up here?
AJ: Where is this if you don’t mind me asking?
Us: It’s a memorial plaque at his school.
AJ: He wants to let you know…” thank you for honoring him and thank you for doing this” because there is a part of it that is written and it’s engraved and there is a part of it that he wants to let you know, it’s his way of waking up and being a legend because he is a legend on the other side because he is known on this side, there is like a superhero type of energy, that he is still strong and not fighting this but still the main guy on this side. Is there a reference to him like just being like honestly a character?
AJ: Because part of it like he is making me feel like “I am not sick, look, I’m not sick”, part of it like I’m alive, I’m happy, I’m having a good time and his energy for me is about kind of making you guys happy and making you guys laugh because I feel like his energy, when it was here physically was kind of to make you guys happy and make sure mom and dad were ok, it wasn’t for you guys to make him up, you know what I mean? I feel like his duty was to assist you and help you guys out as well, he’s also bringing up for me, do you actually…and this will sound very unique, you don’t have his jacket with you do you?
Us: Not with us for today, no.
AJ: Do you carry his jacket around? Why would he bring up his jacket?
Us: His sweatshirt is hanging inside his room and I grab onto it every day.
AJ: He wants to let you know that “I’m there with you when you do that”, “I’m there with you”, because he is making me feel like I need to acknowledge the jacket or the sweatshirt he is identifying with you and he wants to let you know I am still there for that event, I am still part of your life, because his energy, again, he is alive, like spiritually, he’s like right here, my hair is just rising, he’s a vibrant energy for you guys again, it’s not about the medium it is truly about you guys of understanding of why he wants to come across to you guys, it’s about making sure that mom and dad are ok. They are also bringing up for me like when this energy….. did you say your mom passed on the fourteenth?
Us: Uh –hugh.
AJ: Then there must be another reference to this, because flag day is like June 15th, so is there another significance to a governmental holiday, that I need to bring up for you guys?
AJ: Are you guys doing an event?
Us: I haven’t done it the last two years, today and last year but we did every year since he was born with him as a guy in a stroller, or as a cub scout.
AJ: Have a party for him, he is going to be at those events so if you are placing the flags, he wants to acknowledge that I will be there with you guys, so enjoy the moment, enjoy the time with him and even though spiritually he is around you guys even though physically he is not, there is part that he wants to let you know I am still a part of your life today as well, because when I look into you guy’s energy, he is making me feel like, you guys are a team, you are a whole, you guys are a backbone, so I don’t feel like one is weaker than the other I definitely feel like you guys balance each other where you guys are at, but his energy is like I just want to step forward and be this true energy for you guys as well. Why? Is there a weird reference…..do you guys have ties to Orlando? Like Florida?
Us: We took him to Disneyworld. I have some relatives there. We went there twice with him.
AJ: It’s something one step further. I don’t think it’s just Disney. Or two I need to call him by a different name. So would he go by like Dopey, Sleepy, Goofy or something like that? Is there a name that I am actually supposed to bring up here? To acknowledge him, or to acknowledge one of you guys? I feel like it’s a funny, haha, reference that he wants to acknowledge because I don’t think it’s just making the trip to Disneyland because I’d actually see like Anaheim but I feel like if you have ties to Orlando, then I feel like in some sense I need to acknowledge Disneyworld or maybe the name of something. There is something they want to bring up here, like it’s a name.
Us: We used to call his brother Grumpy.
AJ: That makes sense, his brother?
AJ: Your brother?
Us: No, his older brother.
AJ: Still call him Grumpy. Let him know he is still Grumpy from the other side, because I feel like I need to acknowledge him, and need to acknowledge like the name the character, and was he close to his brother if you don’t mind my asking?
AJ: Because I need to acknowledge him in a joking way, like bust his chops and let him know that I still want to feel like the brother energy. But he is making me feel like he’s the better half though. So kind of like tease him with that, so he makes like he was known for that and even though parents don’t have like a favorite child, there is a part of him like he is the better one. So I feel like it’s his way of teasing him in a unique way because he’s making me feel like “I still have all the attention” regardless. So I feel like it’s that type of energy of how he wants to step forward for both of you guys, you know what I mean? And I feel like the energy of him is just to be funny. It is truly just to be funny and remember him how he was like today as well. Now is there a separate energy, like on you guy’s level that is like a male that is passed over? When I say your level I mean, brother, cousin, friend.
Us: No – we don’t think so.
AJ: If not then I might be switching over……. AJ does switch over after all this time to another person in the group but Gus was not done. After speaking to another woman for about twenty minutes, AJ turns back over and says…. Why is your son bringing up music? Was he a musician or why is he bringing up music?
Us: No. Our middle son is really into music all of a sudden.
AJ: Your son is bringing up music. Like he wants to let you know… like I am seeing musical notes. Like when I am talking to her, he just threw music at me. So I feel like it’s almost like he is not done, you know what I mean? So I feel like he wants to jump in so I feel like of how they want to jump in just to acknowledge the energy. They often do that just to get like the little messages across but I feel when your dad steps forward I need to acknowledge the signs and signals, so I feel like he is going to be inspired, like your son is inspiring your son now as sending the music across to him.